India to be the host country in this year’s Lotus Festival

Ritu Jha-

India will be the host country for this year’s Lotus Festival at Echo Park Lake in Los Angeles.

The two-day event will begin on July 9 at 12 p.m. with the inaugural session.

The Lotus Festival “is a family event that celebrates the people and culture and the host country, which is India this year,” said Chinyere Stoneham, an official of the Department of Recreation and Parks, Los Angeles.

After a gap of 2 years, the 41st edition of the Lotus Festival will be an in-person event.

In 2020, the event had to be canceled due to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. And in 2021, the festival was held in a virtual mode, Stoneham told indica.

The Department of Recreation and Parks, Los Angeles with the support of the Los Angeles Lotus Festival Inc. plans and manages the Lotus Festival.

This year’s festivities will revolve around Indian culture and its age-old traditions.

A host of performers will take to the stage to showcase the various forms of Indian dancing and singing.

Echo Park Lake, which has the largest lotus bed in the United States, was selected as the venue for the event as it has significant Asian and Pacific Islander communities living nearby.

The Lotus Festival is held in July annually when the lotus flower blooms. The lotus flower is significant to Asian cultures as a symbol of rebirth, purity, and life.

The festival originated in 1972. It was originally named “The Day of the Lotus” and its purpose was to promote awareness and understanding of the contributions of the Asian and Pacific Islander people to local and surrounding communities.

The first two festivals were one-day affairs that drew nearly 15,000 people.

The success of the festival prompted the organizers to expand it to a two-day event.

Each year the committee chooses an Asian Pacific Islander country to host the festival.

The dragon boat races became part of the event when China was the host country.

Since 1991, the festival has drawn over 100,000 visitors every year.

Countries that have hosted the festival in the past include Japan, Philippines, China, Samoa, Tonga, Hawaii, Korea, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Tibet, Loatia, Bangladesh, and Hmong.